The case study is a method used as a part of, off-the-job managerial training and development. It includes a detailed written description of a stimulated or real life decision making scenario. Trainees are expected to solve the problems stated in the case using their decision making ability complemented with teamwork skills.
The aim of the case study method is to develop managerial competency, problem solving and decision making skills. The trainer will only act as a facilitator to guide the discussion but will not provide any input in order to encourage the trainees to participate and master their KSAs.
An advantage of the case study method is that it exposes the trainees to a wide range of situations, which they otherwise may not have face and thereby allows them test their skills and develop their strengths. Furthermore this method provokes real life behaviour to help trainees understand and improve their behaviour in a crisis situation. Another advantage is that case studies stimulate innovation and ideas which can be further implemented on the job.
However, many times case studies are considered as unrealistic and therefore irrelevant by trainees. As a consequence trainees may not put enough effort to generate viable solutions. Furthermore, in real life the problems are not laid out in paper as it is in the case study, therefore it does not develop problem identification skills. Lastly, case studies have no right or wrong answer therefore validation of the solution is difficult.